Leeds United have confirmed an investigation has been opened into an allegation that Arsenal players were the subject of racist abuse during Saturday's Premier League match at Elland Road.

Arsenal beat Leeds 4-1 thanks to two goals from Gabriel Martinelli, plus strikes from Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe.

However, during the first half, referee Andre Marriner was called to the sidelines after Arsenal substitute Rob Holding held a discussion with the fourth official, with Mikel Arteta and a Leeds representative also listening in.

It was alleged Arsenal's bench had been the subject of racist abuse from the stands close to the dug-out, with Arsenal reporting the incident to the stadium manager.

Marriner then informed Arsenal's players not to celebrate in front of a section of the Leeds fans when Saka put them 3-0 up before half-time.

In his post-match news conference, Arsenal manager Arteta confirmed that allegation of racist abuse had been made.

"Yes, unfortunately I can confirm that," he told reporters. "It was reported to the stadium manager and then the authorities will deal with that.

"It was a player siting on the bench. One of the players heard those comments.

"[I'm] very disappointed because we have done so much in football to try to avoid it. But it is a single person. I don't think that merits that a full stadium pays the price.

"It was a single incident and it has to be reported. It was reported and now the authorities will have to work with the clubs to understand what happened."

Leeds subsequently confirmed an investigation had been opened and that one arrest had been in made in connection to the allegation.

"Racism will not be tolerated at Leeds United and any supporter found to be using racist language will be subject to a lifetime ban for all Leeds United games," a club statement read.

 

Mikel Arteta hailed Gabriel Martinelli's "huge" influence in Arsenal's thrashing of Leeds United, but knows there is more to come from the forward.

Martinelli put Arsenal in control with a first-half double at Elland Road, with goals from Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe - either side of Raphinha's penalty - securing a 4-1 win for the Gunners.

It ended a three-match losing streak on the road for Arsenal, who will head into Christmas four points clear of West Ham in fourth place in the Premier League.

Martinelli's opener took Arsenal onto 7,000 top-flight goals, with the Gunners becoming only the third team, after Everton and Liverpool, to hit the milestone.

The Brazilian's second brought up his first Premier League brace in his 39th such appearance, while with Saka and Smith Rowe also getting on the scoresheet, 14 of Arsenal's 27 top-flight goals this season have been scored by players aged 21 or under.

Indeed, Arsenal had three different players aged 21 or younger score for them in a single Premier League game for the very first time.

At 20 years and 183 days, Martinelli became the youngest player to score a league double for Arsenal since Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain against Crystal Palace in 2014 (20y 171d), and Arteta was full of praise for the attacker's display, even if he believes there is much more to follow.

Asked by Sky Sports for his opinion on Martinelli's impact, Arteta said: "Huge. That's why you have to prepare a player.

"You can't throw in a player when he's not ready. He has so much still to improve. He's very humble. His big passion in life is football."

In an interview with BBC Sport, Arteta added: "That's what he can do. He's getting a level of maturity. He's so willing to learn. You can see that on the pitch."

Martinelli thrived in the continued absence of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has fallen out of favour with Arteta after a disciplinary matter.

"He wasn't involved in today's game. Let's see. There's a privacy matter at the moment that I have to respect," Arteta told Sky Sports, perhaps suggesting Aubameyang's absence was not just down to his previous indiscretion.

Arteta confirmed before the match that Arsenal had multiple coronavirus cases among their staff and some players, including midfielder Albert Sambi Lokonga.

"Everyone is healthy. We always follow the guidelines," he added.

"Now it's play as you can and we'll play as we can. The Premier League will make the best decision for everybody [about continuing or not].

"We want to play all under the same rules. That's where I think they have to come forward. Whatever they decide is best for the competition, but it has to be explained."

While Arsenal were able to celebrate, Leeds sit 16th with 16 points from their 18 games.

It is the joint-fewest points they have ever earned from their first 18 matches of any league campaign, along with 2006-07 in the Championship, assuming three points for a win.

Arsenal further consolidated their place in the top four as Gabriel Martinelli's double helped them to a 4-1 victory over depleted Leeds United.

In the only Premier League game to take place on Saturday after a raft of coronavirus-enforced postponements, Arsenal ended a run of three successive away league defeats in style as Leeds suffered another hammering following a 7-0 thrashing at Manchester City.

They were helped by a dismal first-half display from Leeds, who allowed 11 shots on target – the most by any side in the opening 45 minutes of a match since Opta records began in 2003-04.

Martinelli's brace and Bukayo Saka's strike punished some woeful defending, and although Raphinha's penalty reduced the arrears, substitute Emile Smith Rowe added insult to injury late on.

Saka drilled wide of an open goal and llan Meslier came to Leeds' rescue in an early Arsenal onslaught, yet the goalkeeper could do little to prevent Martinelli deservedly putting the Gunners ahead after pouncing on Adam Forshaw's error.

Raphinha dragged wide at the culmination of a wonderful run and Leeds were swiftly made to pay – Martinelli racing onto Granit Xhaka's pass and lifting a neat finish over Meslier to make it 2-0.

Meslier made another fine stop from Alexandre Lacazette, but it was 3-0 by the break when Saka's effort deflected in off Mateusz Klich.

Xhaka went in late on Raphinha after the restart, and was fortunate to escape a booking, especially when Joe Gelhardt was carded for a similar foul on Takehiro Tomiyasu.

Saka went close to doubling his tally as Arsenal kept Leeds at arm's length, yet a reckless lunge from Ben White on Gelhardt handed the hosts a lifeline.

Raphinha sent his penalty into the top-right corner, yet any comeback hopes were dashed when Smith Rowe finished first-time from Martin Odegaard's superb pass.

 

What does it mean? The kids are alright 

Arsenal's goal this season is Champions League qualification, and they are right in the mix. Indeed, with so many other games cancelled this weekend, they are assured of being four points clear of fifth place at Christmas. 

They remain a work in process under Arteta, though there is no doubt he is changing the make-up of his squad – indeed, 14 of Arsenal's 27 league goals this season have been scored by players aged 21 or under.

Magnificent Martinelli brings up Gunners milestone

Martinelli was afforded the freedom of Elland Road at times in the first half and he duly made Leeds pay, scoring his first Premier League double in his 39th top-flight appearance, while he has netted as many goals in his last two league matches for Arsenal as he had in his previous 24 beforehand (three).

His opener was also Arsenal's 7,000th top-flight goal, with the Gunners becoming only the third English side to reach that total since the Football League began in 1888, after Everton (7,139) and Liverpool (7,069).

Bielsa losing his spark?

Leeds had to name a bench of nine players all aged 21 or under, meanwhile, with their injury issues really hitting hard. That being said, 11 goals conceded over two games is a more than worrying trend, and Marcelo Bielsa's side need players back, and reinforcements in January, if they are to avoid a relegation scrap.

The Argentine will still carry favour with the fans, but Leeds have already lost eight games and sit 16th, while they are hugely reliant on Raphinha, who has scored eight of their 18 league goals this term (44 per cent). Only Teemu Pukki for Norwich (63 per cent – 5/8) has scored a higher ratio for a side in this season's competition.

What's next?

Doubt remains over whether the season will continue or be paused, but as it stands Arsenal are set to face Norwich City, while Leeds face a daunting trip to Anfield.

Leeds United named a 15-year-old on their bench as Marcelo Bielsa's injury hit side prepared to take on Arsenal in Saturday's only Premier League fixture.

With Aston Villa's clash with Burnley being called off earlier in the day, the meeting between the Gunners and Leeds at Elland Road was the only match to go ahead amid a raft of COVID-19-enforced protocols. 

Leeds, however, are suffering an injury crisis, and Bielsa was once again forced to turn to the team's youngsters.

With Luke Ayling starting at centre-back alongside the returning Robin Koch, 20-year-old Cody Drameh was handed a first Premier League start at right-back, while Joe Gelhardt, who scored against Chelsea last week, was named as the forward.

However, Bielsa has very little experience on the bench, with all nine of the substitutes aged 21 or under.

Those included 15-year-old Archie Gray, the son of former Leeds player Andy Gray, who is the nephew of Leeds legend Frank Gray. Should he come on, Gray will become the Premier League's youngest-ever player.

Arsenal, meanwhile, were able to name an unchanged team to the side that beat West Ham in midweek, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang again left out, as Mikel Arteta confirmed he would be in his pre-match news conference.

However, the Gunners did confirm midfielder Albert Sambi Lokonga had tested positive for coronavirus.

Premier League clubs are set to meet on Monday to discuss how best to proceed amid the rising cases of the virus in the United Kingdom, attributed to the Omicron variant.

Mikel Arteta has confirmed Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is "not available for selection" against Leeds United, having been left out of the squad for the club's last two Premier League games.

Aubameyang reportedly returned late from a trip to France and was not involved as the Gunners beat Southampton 3-0 at home on December 11. 

The Gabon striker was subsequently stripped of the captaincy and was omitted again on Wednesday as Arsenal clinched an important 2-0 London derby victory over West Ham to leapfrog the Hammers into fourth.

The Gunners' success in the absence of Aubameyang suggests the team is moving on from their reliance on the 32-year-old, who has managed just four league goals in 14 appearances so far this season.

Arteta's men travel to Elland Road on Saturday but will do so without their former skipper as the Gunners boss refused to expand on the star forward's future.

"No, [Aubameyang] is not available for selection," Arteta said at a news conference ahead of the match against Leeds.

No permanent replacement captain has yet been selected by Arteta, with the Arsenal manager seemingly content to allow leadership duties to be shared in the short-term.

He did single out 23-year-old Martin Odegaard - who wears the armband for Norway - for praise, hailing the attacking midfielder's professionalism.

"He's very young but he already has a lot of experience in different clubs and at international level," Arteta continued. 

"He's getting very close to his best level and the ceiling for him, I don't know where it is because of the talent he has and desire he has. We've got a tremendous player there.

"He's a natural leader. If you look for the perfect professional he would not be very far from there."

Marcelo Bielsa was typically honest as he faced questions about his future. After all, they were inevitable after the 7-0 battering by Manchester City earlier this week.

While Leeds fans might try to convince you it was a less frustrating match than their late 3-2 defeat to Chelsea at the weekend, from the outside it looked as bleak as it gets.

"Do you think that after suffering a 7-0 defeat I can discard the instability?" Bielsa asked on Thursday. "Do you think there's a coach that can't be sacked, who is unsackable? Do you think I'm so vain that I think I can't be sacked?"

Given everything Bielsa's done for Leeds in his four years, it might be fair enough to ponder whether he was untouchable or not, but Tuesday was grim.

It was Leeds' joint-heaviest defeat ever in the Football League/Premier League and the first time Bielsa conceded seven goals in one match over his entire management career – that equates to 568 matches.

While it was only the first time Leeds have suffered back-to-back league losses this term, defeat to City was the continuation of an unequivocally bad start to the season.

Great expectations

In all competitions, Leeds have won just four matches in 90 minutes and only one of those has come since the start of November.

Things don't look much more encouraging this weekend either as they face Arsenal. A third defeat in a row could potentially leave them just two points above the bottom three at Christmas.

Injuries aren't helping their cause, with as many as seven players set to miss out this weekend and Junior Firpo is suspended. Among the absentees is Patrick Bamford, the scorer of 17 Premier League goals last season.

He's already missed a chunk of the season, featuring just six times in the Premier League, perhaps going some way to explaining some of Leeds' issues.

Their injuries, form and proximity to the bottom three are all putting extra expectation on one player.

Raphinha wasn't exactly an unknown when he joined Leeds – Rennes and Ligue 1 are hardly 'obscurity', but he's undoubtedly seen his reputation grow exponentially during his 14 months in England.

His debut season was very promising as Raphinha managed to combine the work rate demanded in a Bielsa team with on-the-ball flair and an eye for the spectacular.

Feisty, flamboyant and forceful – Leeds fans could barely believe they'd managed to retain him when the most recent transfer window shut.

Among the league's most-crucial players

It's fair to say he picked up where he left off, having already surpassed last season's goals total when his penalty against Chelsea took him to seven in 15 games.

Though, with Bamford missing, Raphinha is having to operate slightly differently due to there being the need to pick up the slack caused by absences.

Given Bamford's injury problems, it's unsurprising to see Raphinha's shot frequency has increased from 2.6 to 3.1 every 90 minutes and that's probably had a knock-on effect to his creativity.

His two chances created on a per-90-minute basis is down slightly from 2.4 – similarly, his expected assists (xA) has also decreased fractionally to 0.22 from 0.26. Of course, he probably would have been aided in this area had Leeds' best striker been available all season – rather, Raphinha's the one having to lead from the front and be a creative spark.

An increase in touches per game (59.9 to 63) suggests greater general influence, and while that's not translated to more key passes or assists, Raphinha's importance is further highlighted by his involvement Leeds' build-up play.

He's been involved in 592 open play passing sequences this term, a figure only four players designated as strikers or wingers can better. Among the same group, only eight have played a part in more sequences that ended in a shot than the Brazilian (74) and six of those represent members of the so-called 'big six'.

Raphinha's explosive talents and ball carrying skills make him a great asset when Leeds are trying to relieve pressure and get back up the pitch, but we can also see that his team-mates recognise his usefulness when they're trying to retain the ball.

There's a case to be had that, relative to their respective teams, Raphinha is among the most crucial players in the Premier League – after all, since his first start in November 2020, only five players have had a hand in more non-penalty goals than him (21).

While Arsenal may not be the force they once were, beating the Gunners would be a significant feat for Leeds when you consider their current form.

Raphinha was quiet in the mauling by City, failing to register a single shot or key pass, a performance he'll surely be eager to prove was a one-off.

And if anyone can get Leeds out of their slump by terrorising an Arsenal side often accused of lacking personality, it's Raphinha.

Pep Guardiola hailed his "brilliant" Manchester City attackers as the decision to play without an established striker against Leeds United paid off with a 7-0 victory.

Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus were unused substitutes as Guardiola backed his playmaking magicians to show they can wreak havoc.

The likes of Jack Grealish, Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo Silva, Phil Foden and particularly Kevin De Bruyne tormented Leeds, with Rodri employed in the holding role.

"Congratulations to the team, it was a good performance from us," Guardiola said afterwards.

"The vibes of the stadium was nice today. It was sold out and they supported us incredibly well. We started in a good rhythm. We were patient with the ball and the quality of the players did the rest."

Ten-man Leeds pulled off a shock 2-1 win at the Etihad Stadium last season, and held Guardiola's men to a draw at Elland Road, but there was never any danger of stalemate or a City defeat this time.

"We lost five points last season when we were playing Leeds," Guardiola told NBC. "I'm pretty sure every opponent knows what it means to play against Leeds."

Foden's eighth-minute opener was City's 500th Premier League goal under Guardiola, in just his 207th game in charge. It is the fastest any manager has seen their side reach 500 goals in the competition, beating Jurgen Klopp's record of 234 games.

And with seven goals, who needs strikers?

"You're not going to convince me... When we lose a game you're going to say, 'Yes it's because they don't have a striker'," Guardiola said. "I know this theory quite well. We have strikers, but sometimes we play [this way] because I could say Phil is a guy who scores a lot of goals.

"But it is the way that we try to play. This is the reason why today we did a good performance."

Former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss Guardiola added: "When you get these results, it's because individually they are brilliant. 

"Kevin in this type of game when we're open up and down, Kevin is devastating and so he can do whatever he wants."

Nathan Ake got in on the goals, heading in the seventh after a double for De Bruyne, with Foden, Grealish, Mahrez and John Stones also finding the net.

Mahrez has both scored (10) and been directly involved in (13 – 10 goals, 3 assists) more goals in all competitions for City this season than any of his team-mates.

This was his 100th Premier League appearance for City and he marked it with a deflected strike. He also scored on his 100th game in the competition for Leicester City and is the only player in the competition's history to score on his 100th match for two different sides.

Grealish, meanwhile, scored his 17th Premier League goal and second for City, but it was his first headed goal in the top flight. Mahrez supplied the cross.

"From the first minute, I think you could see we were on it," said Dutch defender Ake.

"We had a lot of energy, a lot of drive going forward, and then we scored the goals."

Ake was reluctant to set goals, but City's is obvious enough. They are hunting a fourth league title in five years and on this form will take some stopping.

"I think we do it game by game," he added. "There's another one on Sunday [at Newcastle], but we're in a great flow, we're doing really well, everyone feels good and we just want to continue that."

Kevin De Bruyne described Manchester City's 7-0 thrashing of Leeds United as "a booster for the whole team" after he returned to scoring form with an exceptional double.

De Bruyne was one of five attacking players fielded by Premier League champions City, with not a natural centre forward among them, and the quintet's marauding was more than Leeds could handle at the Etihad Stadium.

Phil Foden, Jack Grealish and Riyad Mahrez joined De Bruyne on the scoresheet, while defenders John Stones and Nathan Ake also got in on the act late on.

De Bruyne was starting a Premier League game for the first time since the derby against Manchester United on November 6, after working his way back to fitness from a recent COVID-19 lay-off.

"There's been a lot happening this year, a little bit out of my control, so the only thing I can do is try to work hard and come back as quick as possible," City playmaker De Bruyne told NBC.

"It's unfortunate with everything that happened, and at the time I was coming back in a good rhythm until I got COVID. So it happened and now we're working hard to come back in a good level.

"I think we played incredibly well, especially with the way they press; we found the right time to attack them."

City's seven goals came from an expected goals (xG) tally of 2.2, which suggests their finishing was outstanding, as it plainly was.

A curiosity was that they also had an xG of 2.2 in last season's corresponding fixture, but lost that 2-1 to a smash-and-grab Leeds.

This time City built a big early lead – 3-0 in 32 minutes – and stretched clear.

"When you're three or four-nil up it gets tougher for them," said Belgium international De Bruyne. "They tried to keep it a little more tight in the second half, but I think we had enough chances to score a lot more.

"It's good for everybody. A lot of people who maybe didn't play a lot played today chipped in, so for the whole team it's a booster.

"We were patient at the beginning and at the right times we found the gaps to go forward and punished them."

De Bruyne's second goal, a fizzing 25-yard shot, moved City 5-0 in front and was his 20th successful strike from outside the penalty area in the Premier League since his debut for the club in September 2015. That is more than anyone else has managed in the same time frame.

City moved four points clear of Liverpool at the top of the table after inflicting Leeds' heaviest defeat of the Premier League era.

While Leeds totter in the bottom five, City have eyes on the big prize again, and a seventh consecutive win in the league means they are in great shape to push towards that target.

De Bruyne expects a tough battle for the title though, saying: "It's a hell of a competition. It's going to be a hell of a race this year, but we're trying to be there."

Kevin De Bruyne turned on the style with a brilliant double, and you could only marvel as Manchester City savaged Leeds United 7-0 in the Premier League.

Long-time friends Pep Guardiola and Marcelo Bielsa watched with contrasting emotions from the touchline as City inflicted the biggest defeat Leeds have ever suffered in the competition.

Guardiola's City were sensational, with Phil Foden, Jack Grealish, Riyad Mahrez, John Stones and Nathan Ake joining De Bruyne on the scoresheet, City passing the 500-goal mark in the Premier League under their Spanish boss.

The pick of the goals was De Bruyne's second and City's fifth, as his land-to-air missile from 25 yards left Illan Meslier helpless, with City surging four points clear of Liverpool at the top of the table.

Foden made the eighth-minute breakthrough when he finished off from the edge of the penalty area after the rampaging Rodri was beaten in a dash to the ball by Leeds goalkeeper Meslier.

By that stage Bernardo Silva had already missed a sitter from in front of an open goal. Leeds were in disarray and trailed 2-0 inside 13 minutes when Grealish headed in Riyad Mahrez's whipped cross from the right – his first headed goal in his Premier League career.

De Bruyne made it 3-0 in the 32nd minute, a classy finish on his left foot from Rodri's throughball. Foden then shot fractionally wide of the right post, with Meslier beaten, before seeing another shot blocked by Luke Ayling, as City looked to boost their goal difference.

Mahrez gave City a fourth in the 49th minute, a deflection off Junior Firpo diverting the Algerian's skidding shot wide of the unlucky Meslier and into the left corner.

Foden prodded in from Mahrez's pass but was inches offside; however, a fifth City goal arrived emphatically in the 62nd minute when De Bruyne smashed high and handsome into the net from distance.

Stones lashed in the sixth and fellow defender Ake headed goal number seven as City outclassed despairing visitors.

Manchester City scored their 500th Premier League goal under Pep Guardiola in Tuesday's clash with Leeds United.

Phil Foden put City ahead against Leeds at the Etihad Stadium as they reached the landmark figure in record time under a manager.

Foden made the eighth-minute breakthrough when he finished off from the edge of the penalty area after Rodri was beaten in a dash to the ball by Leeds goalkeeper Illan Meslier.

City required just 207 games to score the 500 goals, bettering the 234 games it took Liverpool to net that amount under Jurgen Klopp.

Next on that list is legendary Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson (265 games), followed by Arsenal great Arsene Wenger (271).

Sergio Aguero, who departed City at the end of last season, has scored the most goals for City during Guardiola's five and a half year tenure with 82 to his name.

Raheem Sterling has been responsible for 76 of the goals, Gabriel Jesus 52, Kevin De Bruyne 37 and Ilkay Gundogan 31 among those to have netted 30 or more.

City's highest-scoring season under Guardiola was in 2017-18 when finding the net 106 times.

Pep Guardiola insists Jack Grealish does not need to do anything differently in order to prove his value to Manchester City.

The midfielder signed from Aston Villa for a British record transfer fee of £100million, ensuring expectations were high on his arrival.

Although City have stormed to the Premier League summit ahead of Tuesday's visit of Leeds United, there is a sense that Grealish – with 11 starts and one goal in the top flight to his name this season – is yet to find his footing.

But Guardiola has no such concerns over the England star.

"Grealish doesn't have to do anything different. The way he's playing is good," said the City boss. 

"It will come, absolutely no problem. He'll continue to practice because you've got so many fantastic players. He thinks we have to score correct goals all the time. He doesn't have to.

"What he has to do is play feel like he knows what he has to do. He has to do exactly what he is doing. No more than that. The rest is coming in time.

"He has chances to score goals every game and one day he is going to do it. He could have had a hat-trick against Watford and he will have that chance again."

Grealish will hope to get the chance to make his mark against Leeds in midweek, with Guardiola anticipating a stern test against Marcelo Bielsa's team as City go in search of a seventh consecutive league win.

"Before, we played against them, we knew it, we felt it. It is one of the toughest opponents," he said, with his side winless in four against Leeds.

"They play every week in a special unique way and we play against the special and unique way just two times a year. It is completely different to other opponents.

"They are going to play in a way we are not used to in these kinds of games. At the same time, it is at the Etihad, we know a lot of people will be there and we want to do a good game.

"[Patrick] Bamford was injured for a long time now. [Kalvin] Phillips, too. A few important players. But if there is one person who doesn't complain about what happens, it is Marcelo. He loves to work when the situation is tough."

The Premier League provided its usual drama on Saturday with decisive penalties awarded in all but one of the fixtures.

Chelsea left it late against Leeds United in a game that saw referee Chris Kavanagh award three penalties, while Manchester United earned a narrow win thanks to another Cristiano Ronaldo spot-kick.

Liverpool also profited from the penalty spot as Steven Gerrard made his return to Anfield with Aston Villa, and another conversion from 12 yards aided Manchester City at home to Wolves.

Elsewhere, Arsenal cruised past Southampton, who are yet to win at Emirates Stadium in 23 Premier League attempts – the longest winless run for one club away to another in the competition's history.

With tons of action to unpack, Stats Perform takes an in-depth look at the pick of Opta facts from Saturday's clashes.

Manchester City 1-0 Wolves: Jimenez moment of madness gifts Citizens win

Raheem Sterling reached a century of Premier League goals as City scraped by 10-man Wolves, who could not hold on after Raul Jimenez's bizarre red card for two yellows in a matter of seconds.

Jimenez became the first ever Mexican player to receive a red card in the Premier League, making Mexico the 76th nation to have a player dismissed in the competition.

Sterling then scored from the penalty spot after Joao Moutinho was adjudged to have handled, becoming the 32nd player to 100 Premier League goals and the eighth-youngest at 27 years and three days.

Pep Guardiola's side held on to that slender lead and have now won 32 of their 40 league games in 2021 (D2 L6) – only Liverpool in 1982 (33) have won more matches in a single calendar year in English top-flight history.

Chelsea 3-2 Leeds United: Spot-kick drama condemns Whites to another London loss

Leeds have a miserable record in London and that was extended to just two wins in their past 33 matches in all competitions in the capital despite Raphinha finding the net when a first penalty was awarded in the visitors' favour at Stamford Bridge.

Mason Mount cancelled out that opener, before Raphinha became the 13th player – and first Leeds star – to both score and concede a penalty in the same Premier League game when he brought down Antonio Rudiger, allowing Jorginho to score.

Although Joe Gelhardt netted Leeds' first top-flight goal by a teenager since James Milner versus Everton in April 2004 to level the match again, Rudiger won a second penalty – the first Chelsea player to earn two in a Premier League game since Yuri Zhirkov against Aston Villa in March 2010 – deep into stoppage time.

Jorginho settled the result with his second from 12 yards after 93 minutes and 11 seconds, the Blues' latest winning goal in the competition since Florent Malouda's strike against Stoke City in September 2009 (93:36).

Liverpool 1-0 Aston Villa: Salah downs shot-shy Villans

Returning hero Gerrard was greeted with a standing ovation back at Anfield, but the latest king of the Kop ensured his Villa side went away empty-handed. 

Mohamed Salah again made the difference, the Egypt international converting his 15th straight Premier League penalty – the second-longest ever such run in the competition after Matt Le Tissier (23 between 1994 and 2000).

Salah is also now just one game away from Jamie Vardy's record of either scoring or assisting in 15 straight Premier League matches between August and December 2015.

This was Liverpool's 100th 1-0 win in the competition and their second in a row for the first time since December 2015, requiring just the one goal as Villa failed to register a single shot on target in a league match for the first time since December 2019 against Sheffield United.

Norwich City 0-1 Manchester United: Another Ronaldo rescue act for Red Devils

Ralf Rangnick has pinpointed United's defensive issues as a key area to fix and there were more positive signs on that front – at least on the stats sheet.

Rangnick became just the second Manchester United manager to register a clean sheet in his first two league games after Ernest Mangnall in 1903.

United were far from convincing in either defence or attack, though, again relying on David de Gea and match-winner Ronaldo, who won and scored United's 50th successful away Premier League spot-kick – only Liverpool (60) have netted more such goals in the competition's history.

Ronaldo also became only the third player to score for three different United managers in a single season after James Hanson and Joe Spence both did so in 1926-27.

Thomas Tuchel hailed the attitude of Antonio Rudiger after the centre-back won two penalties, including what would be a 94th-minute winner as Chelsea overcame Leeds United 3-2.

A rollercoaster of a contest on Saturday saw Leeds go ahead via a penalty of their own at Stamford Bridge, dispatched by Raphinha.

Mason Mount equalised before half-time and then Rudiger found himself in the penalty box just before the hour mark, where he was adjudged to have been fouled by Raphinha, with Jorginho making no mistake from the spot.

Teenager Joe Gelhardt thought he had snatched a point for his team after emerging from the bench to turn home seven minutes from the end, but Rudiger was once again on the end of a clattering in the opposition box in stoppage time, with Mateusz Klich bringing him down, and Jorginho converted for a second time to win it for the Blues.

Speaking to the media after the game, Tuchel was full of praise for Rudiger and his will to win.

"He did not accept today to lose, we can agree on this one," Tuchel said. "We expected an intense match for Toni and [Cesar Azpilicueta] because of Leeds' unique style of defending.

"They have to be constantly in the game and focus on defending and attacking. They arrived in these spaces because they let us drive in there. It was good because he did not accept to lose."

The London club had come off a tumultuous week, losing top spot in the Premier League after a 3-2 defeat at West Ham, before also losing first place in their Champions League group following a 3-3 draw at Zenit in midweek, and Tuchel was relieved his team put that behind them with a win.

"I was confident we'd get one more chance and turn things around because we played very strong in the first half and showed a good reaction after the equaliser," the Chelsea head coach added.

"We played with a fear maybe to lose and we didn't want to lose what we worked so hard for. It was a bit of luck in the end when you get a late goal but we've conceded two of them so maybe it was our turn.

"We needed this win desperately for the mood, the feeling, the atmosphere. We have two days off now which we need for the boys."

The former Borussia Dortmund and Paris Saint-Germain head coach also had some kind words for the match-winner, Jorginho, whose penalty after 93 minutes and 11 seconds was Chelsea's latest winning goal in a Premier League game since Florent Malouda's strike against Stoke in September 2009 (93:36).

"He is super important," Tuchel continued. "He sacrifices himself for many weeks actually. I knew this moment would come where he suffers because he played Champions League, then played in Europe with Italy, then qualifiers for the World Cup, so it was not only physical effort for him but it was mentally very demanding.

"He had no pre-season, started the Super Cup straight away, so I knew there would be a point in the season he doesn't feel fully fit.

"But Jorgi is fully aware of the situation and has sacrificed. He has been hours and hours with the physios and medical department to get himself in the best shape possible."

Chelsea had to rely on a stoppage-time penalty from Jorginho to finally overcome Leeds United in a dramatic 3-2 victory in the Premier League on Saturday.

Goals from Mason Mount and two penalties from the Italian cancelled out Raphinha's opener and Joe Gelhardt's late strike in a topsy turvy affair at Stamford Bridge.

Having lost top spot in the Premier League last week after losing 3-2 at West Ham, before also losing first place in their Champions League group following a 3-3 draw at Zenit, another setback was the last thing Thomas Tuchel's men needed.

The Blues almost had that setback as they threw away a lead for the third time in a week when substitute Gelhardt struck in the 83rd minute, but a foolish challenge by Mateusz Klich on Antonio Rudiger gave Jorginho the chance to win it in the 94th minute from the spot, and he made no mistake.

The hosts started brightly, determined to make amends for a sloppy week prior, but it was the visitors who took the lead when they were awarded a penalty in the 26th minute after Marcos Alonso brought down Dan James in the box.

Raphinha stepped up to outfox Mendy and put Leeds ahead with a penalty that would have made Jorginho proud had it not been against his team.

Alonso atoned for his indiscretion four minutes before half-time as he won the ball from Stuart Dallas and whipped a low cross into the near post, where Mount was waiting to equalise.

Just before the hour mark, Jorginho had a chance to replicate Raphinha after a VAR check deemed the Leeds goalscorer to have fouled Rudiger in the penalty area, and the Italian sent Illan Meslier the wrong way with a trademark effort from the spot.

Gelhardt thought he had snatched a point for his team when he turned home a Tyler Roberts cross with seven minutes to go, but Jorginho's second spot-kick of the day late on won it for the Blues.

What does it mean? Blues back to winning ways

After a defeat last week and the blow of drawing late in the Champions League in midweek, Chelsea looked particularly relieved to eventually find the win here, especially after title rivals Manchester City's victory against Wolves earlier in the day.

Tuchel will still not be pleased at how sloppy his team were when ahead, but Chelsea looked impressive when hunting the lead, managing five attempts at goal in the five minutes between Mount's strike and the half-time whistle.

Chelsea have now won their last five home league games against Leeds – the first time they have ever managed such a run against their historic rivals.

Mount impressive again

Mount has been in excellent form of late, both scoring and assisting a goal in three of his previous four Premier League starts before today.

He only managed a goal on this occasion but could easily have had an assist as well, such was his creativity, providing five crosses in another all-action display, the most of any Blues player.

Mount also has the most league goals (10) and assists (six) of any Chelsea player under Tuchel.

More London blues for Leeds

It was an unlucky afternoon at Stamford Bridge for Marcelo Bielsa's men, who had their chances and were within minutes of what would have been a well-earned draw.

The Whites have now won just two of their last 33 away matches in London in all competitions (D7 L24) and have lost three of their last four games when scoring first in the capital: also against Chelsea last December and against Tottenham in November (winning 2-1 in the other vs Fulham).

What’s next?

There's more Premier League action on the horizon as Chelsea host Everton on Thursday while Leeds travel to Manchester City on Tuesday.

Barcelona are in disarray – out of Champions League and out of money.

Funds are limited at Camp Nou and it is forcing the embattled LaLiga giants to make some tough decisions.

Frenkie de Jong and Marc-Andre ter Stegen could be sold.

 

TOP STORY – DE JONG AND TER STEGEN TO LEAVE CAMP NOU?

Barcelona are willing to sell Frenkie de Jong and Marc-Andre ter Stegen due to the club's finances, according to Diario AS.

Eliminated from the Champions League at the group stage, Barca are in the midst of a financial crisis, having been forced to part with superstar captain Lionel Messi at the start of the season.

Barca head coach Xavi faces a rebuilding job but needs to raise funds, and star midfielder De Jong and goalkeeper Ter Stegen could be sacrificed.

De Jong has been linked with Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool and Bayern Munich, who have also eyed Ter Stegen.

 

ROUND-UP

- Football Insider says Real Madrid are weighing up a move for former superstar Cristiano Ronaldo if he does not fit into the system of United interim manager Ralf Rangnick.

- ESPN claims Borussia Dortmund's Jude Bellingham, RB Leipzig midfielder Amadou Haidara and Kalvin Phillips of Leeds United are key targets for Manchester United. Erling Haaland is also a long-term target of United.

Chelsea are eyeing Leicester City's Wesley Fofana as a replacement for soon-to-be free agent Antonio Rudiger, per Goal. Rudiger has been linked with Real Madrid and Bayern on a free transfer. Preparing for life after Rudiger, Chelsea have also been linked to Sevilla centre-back Jules Kounde.

Paris Saint-Germain are looking to move on Mauro Icardi, Rafinha and Abdou Diallo, says L'Equipe. Icardi has been linked with Juventus, Milan, Newcastle United and Tottenham.

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